7K Demonstrators expected on Fiery Cross Reef runway, South China Sea
As the tensions in the South China Sea continue to heat up, activists and concerned citizens have been invited to sign up to support and even join an 11 November 2021 demonstration and camp-out on the runway of Fiery Cross reef.
The organizers say they seek to briefly disable Fiery Cross’s military usage, rendering it an upgraded-rock located in the Spratly island chain.
This real estate is claimed by the Republic of the Philippines as well as Vietnam, but regardless, China has used force to seize the Spratly group of islands for itself and has militarized Fiery Cross reef since 2014.
The runway shown in the image below is 05/23 in aviation jargon, meaning that, “aircraft can land on headings of zero five zero degrees or two hundred and thirty degrees, depending which direction puts the nose of the aeroplane most into the prevailing wind,” explained Beverley, a RINJ member, one of the organizers, who has piloted aircraft that use runways the size of this misplaced Fiery Cross behemoth.
The Fiery Cross runway is huge at 9,842 feet or 3,000 meters. “We have women who say they can can land a loaded Boeing 777 on that runway,” said Geraldine Frisque, a spokesperson for the SCS-Demonstration organizing group, RINJ Women.
Fiery Cross reef.
A Planet Skysat captured this image of Fiery Cross reef in the South China Sea on May 3, 2020. Constructed between 2014 and 2017, Fiery Cross reef is one of China’s seven artificial islands in the Spratly Islands and represents an unlawful military presence in the region. Photo Credit: Planet Skysat
GPS Grid: 9° 32′ 45″ N, 112° 53′ 15″ E
Total area of reclamation: 677 acres
Fiery Cross Reef is a military air base & Signals-Intel center
Named after the British tea clipper Fiery Cross, which was shipwrecked on the reef on 4 March 1860, the Fiery Cross reef was first surveyed by the British.
On the artificial island are hangars to accommodate 24 combat aircraft; four big hangars for housing bombers, refueling tankers, and transport aircraft, according to military sources who looked at the women’s collection of photographs. Some observers have valued the land reclamation and military installations at over $12 billion USA dollars.
Defending the man-made island are large guns with 100-mm barrels, close-in weapons systems emplacements, and air-defence systems says the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative.
A study of satellite images and aerial photographs shows the island to feature an antenna farm of considerable diversity suggesting that it may well be a signals intelligence and communications facility for the entire South China Sea operations of all elements of the Chinese military.
“The SCS-Demonstration has been planned with the help of RINJ members in China and around the world for over a year,” said Ms. Frisque.
“We have tried every possible approach including writing peace plans and scholarly history papers on the Nine-Dash-Line fanatics. Militarizing the South China sea has been an environmental disaster nad has brought the world closer to a world war.”
“But the one haunting fact is that the pandemic has exacerbated the impact of China piracy, China pollution and China’s ecological recklessness in the South China Sea,” the organizer continued.
“Sinking small fishing boats and stealing the equipment and the catch of countless fisher people supporting coastal Vietnamese and Philippines families has brought many to the point of starvation. Somebody has to do something, because this piracy has gone on too long, with impunity. The South China Sea must be demilitarized and it seems that ordinary people are the ones who must get this done in a global effort,” she said.